Stop attacking US troops: Iraq cleric to followers
Baghdad: An anti-American cleric in Iraq is calling on his followers to cease attacks on US troops leaving the country so that the withdrawal isn't slowed down.
Shi’ite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has been demanding that all American forces leave Iraq by the end of the year as planned, or potentially face widespread violence.
Al-Sadr says in a statement posted on his website late Saturday that he has ordered his militias to let the Americans leave peacefully.
He says his ceasefire order was spurred by last week's notice by US officials in Baghdad that the withdrawal has begun.
Al-Sadr also warns he will step up attacks against US forces if any stay past the end of the year, a move that American and Iraqi officials are now considering.